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TC Auto Show Gives Sneak Peak At The Near Future

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Twin Cities Auto Show kicked off Saturday and show producers say they’re expecting one of the biggest crowds they’ve seen in years.

When you consider car sales have hit a four-year high, it’s easy to see why. February car sales were the best since February of 2008.

According to popular car website Edmunds.com, the bounce can be credited to the large number of sales incentives being offered by automakers.

Here’s a sneak peak at the latest and greatest in car features that had show-goers talking.

There was no question on which cars drew the most attention. All you have to do look for crowding.

Show Director Scott Lambert gave a look at the future by showing the Prius prototype — a car that’s about to be in production, but that you can’t find just yet on dealership floors.

The Prius prototype says goodbye to keys. As long as the key fab is near, all you have to do is push a button to get the engine started. The prototype also bids farewell to the traditional stick shift, and displays what looks to be a mini-stick.

“It’s just nothing,” Lambert said. “It used to be three on the tray or four on the floor, that’s how far we’ve come in the technology.”

Hyundai has a new model that had show-goers gawking. A cooler sits comfortably in the pull-down back seat.

As you may expect, the most expensive car on the lot also had features worth mentioning.

“There’s a reason why it’s called a smart car,” said Bentley Sales Specialist Kristian “KG” Goldsmith.

The 2011 GTC Bentley features neck warmers and even built-in electronic massage chairs.

“Only the male cows are used to make the interior level of the vehicle. They don’t use the females, bulls only,” Goldsmith said.

Also, every seat in the car is hand-sewn. At the price of $241,000, you might have to put it on next year’s wish list.

The 39th Annual Twin Cities Auto Show runs through Sunday, March 18. You can find tickets and information at: http://www.tcautoshow.com/.

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